Voltaire, pen name of François-Marie Arouet

Voltaire, pen name of François-Marie Arouet

French Satirist, Essayist, Dramatist, Philosopher and Historian

Author Quotes

We are intelligent beings: intelligent beings cannot have been formed by a crude, blind, insensible being: there is certainly some difference between the ideas of Newton and the dung of a mule. Newton's intelligence, therefore, came from another intelligence

What is tolerance? -- it is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other's folly -- that is the first law of nature.

When you were hanged, dissected, stunned with blows and made to row in the galleys, did you always think that everything was for the best in this world?

Would you believe that while the flames were consuming these innocent victims, the inquisitors and the other savages were chanting prayers? These pitiless monsters were invoking the God of mercy...While committing the most atrocious crime.

We have a natural right to make use of our pens as of our tongue, at our peril, risk and hazard.

What most persons consider as virtue, after the age of 40 is simply a loss of energy.

Where is the prince sufficiently educated to know that for seventeen hundred years the Christian sect has done nothing but harm?

You (Pindar) who possessed the talent of speaking much without saying anything.

We may not always oblige, but we may always speak obligingly

What we find in books is like the fire in our hearts. We fetch it from our neighbors, we kindle it at home, we communicate it to others, and it becomes the property of all.

Where lies friendship, there is one's homeland.

You can never correct your work well until you have forgotten it

We must cultivate our own garden. When man was put in the garden of Eden he was put there so that he should work, which proves that man was not born to rest.

What will the preachers say?... To teach men not to persecute men: for, while a few sanctimonious humbugs are burning a few fanatics, the earth opens and swallows up all alike.

Where there is friendship, there is our natural soil.

You despise books; you whose lives are absorbed in the vanities of ambition, the pursuit of pleasure or indolence; but remember that all the known world, excepting only savage nations, is governed by books.

We must distinguish between speaking to deceive and being silent to be reserved.

What! Have you no monks to teach, to dispute, to govern, to intrigue and to burn people who do not agree with them?

Wherever my travels may lead, paradise is where I am.

You fear the books as some towns feared the violins. Keep reading, and let dance; these two amusements will never do harm to the world.

We offer up prayers to God only because we have made Him after our own image. We treat Him like a Pasha, or a Sultan, who is capable of being exasperated and appeased.

Whatever you do, crush the infamous thing, and love those who love you.

Which is more dangerous: fanaticism or atheism? Fanaticism is certainly a thousand times more deadly; for atheism inspires no bloody passion whereas fanaticism does; atheism is opposed to crime and fanaticism causes crimes to be committed.

You must have the devil in you to succeed in any of the arts.

We owe respect to the living. To the dead we owe only truth.

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Voltaire, pen name of François-Marie Arouet
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French Satirist, Essayist, Dramatist, Philosopher and Historian